Are you trying
to come up with a logo for your company or organization, but are having a hard time
creating a catchy logo that you like? Or did you already create a logo, but have
always felt it lacked professional quality? Coming up with a professional quality,
winning logo design is no easy task. You want your design to capture the theme of
your business or organization in a unique way that looks and feels great. Your logo
is a prominent reflection of you and your company or organization. Properly designed,
it can communicate that your company is credible, trustworthy and professional. A
high quality logo also differentiates you from others, and creates a powerful memory
in the minds of those that view it. You can spend endless hours trying to achieve
this goal, and still be disappointed with the end result. You might consider highering
a professional graphics artist, but that is costly, and still no guarantee that you'll
like the results.
What if you can "borrow" some graphics artists? And what if you can get
different ideas based upon your initial request, collect feedback from people, and
specify design changes to evolve the logo into exactly what you want? This is exactly
the type of service that Logoworks of Lindon, Utah, provides in a variety of different
Logoworks is an online service whose entire business model is to provide an easy
and affordable logo design solution for small businesses and organizations. Logoworks
employs a great number of designers who have expertise in logo design, graphics design
and website design, many of which have a well-rounded skill set that involves all
of these functions.
Price ranges from $299
for just a logo design, up to $1499 which includes logo design, business stationery
design, and web site design. All of these packages can be viewed in an easy-to-read
table on Logowork's website. Depending on the selected
package, you can have anywhere from 2 to 5 designers working on your concept. Standard
logo design packages (Silver, Gold and Platinum) includes from 2 to 5 designers,
from 4 to 10 initial concepts, and from 2 to unlimited revisions. There there are
the Gold Corporate and Platinum Corporate packages which also include business card
design, letterhead design, and envelope design. At the top end of the line is the
Start Up package which also includes website design. At the time of this review,
Logoworks is also offering 250 free business cards for both Corporate packages and
the Start Up package.
Choosing A Package
Which package to select depends greatly on your specific needs. Are you just looking
for a logo design, or are you also interested in business cards, stationery, or even
a web site? The lowest priced package, the Silver package, includes 2 designers,
4 initial concepts, and only includes 2 revisions. I say "only" 2 revisions
because all of the other packages include unlimited revisions. In some circumstances,
two revisions may be all you need. For instance, if you already have a clear idea
of what you're looking for and provide them a concrete starting point, or if your
needs are really simple and/or less demanding. If you find yourself unsatisfied after
the 2nd revision, you can pay an additional fee to go one more revision. If, however,
you keep going this way, you'll end up passing the price point of the next package
up - the Gold package. The Gold package, only $100 more than the Silver, provides
unlimited revisions, an additional designer, and 2 additional initial concepts.
The platinum package provides 5 designers, 10 initial concepts, and unlimited revisions.
This is the best option for running a broader range of ideas, but it's also priced
$200 more than the Gold package. As you will read in this review, the revision process
is one of the key elements that makes the logo design process successful, so I would
recommend a minimum of the Gold package. If you have interest in stationery and business
cards, and have budget for an additional $150 or so, then the corporate packages
will be a great benefit (and currently also include 250 free business cards). The
high-end Start Up package is priced quite a bit more than the rest, $750 more than
the Platinum Corporate. It includes a full web site design. This was the only package
How It Works
Logowork's design process is broken down into five primary steps:
- You describe your
business and preferences
- Logoworks creates
a number of initial logo concepts for you to choose from
- Logoworks revises
your chosen logo based upon your feedback
- You select your final
logo only after completely satisfied
- Optional step for
creating business stationery based upon your logo design
Establishing Your Needs
The first step of the process is to answer a questionaire that Logoworks provides
you. Your answers provide Logoworks with some basic information about your business
or organization, as well as some insight as to what you may be looking for. It includes
looking at a package of logos already created by Logoworks.
By selecting the ones that you like, they get a feel of what your tastes are (don't
worry, they do not just duplicate or combine the selected logos).
After submitting your information, your project is assigned a project manager, and
a design team is selected. You don't actually see the names of the people on the
design team, but according to the package you selected, you should have from 2 to
5 designers working on your logo. Logoworks states they they have over 250 creative
directors and graphic designers, so the resources are there. The project manager
does not select the design team for you; rather, available designers sign up for
the projects they'd like to work on and Logoworks assembles them on the project accordingly.
That means that the designers working on your project are there by choice, not because
they have to.
If they have questions about your requirements, the project manager will email and/or
call you to discuss them. This is a good thing, as it shows that they are interested
in learning as much as they can to tailer the logo design to your needs.
Once the project starts, you can visit the website to see the status. When work is
in progress, the web site provides an estimated date AND TIME when completion of
this step of the process will be completed. I thought it was pretty cool that they
would narrow it down to the exact time. The initial concept phase typically took
3 business days, and was delivered on the promised date, either at or before the
Reviewing the Initial Concepts
This step is where the fun begins. Based solely upon the information you provided
Logoworks, you now receive a number of initial concepts. Depending upon your package,
you'll have from 4 to 10 concepts to look at. In many cases, they provided a few
bonus concepts as well (note, that extra concepts are not guaranteed).
You'll receive notification via email, and then go to their website to review the
logos. On the website, you'll have the option to either select one of the concepts
to use, or setup an automated feedback page for friends and coworkers to help you
decide. By entering in a list of names and email addresses (no worries on privacy
issues, as they do not share, or even retain, the email addresses you list here),
your friends and colleagues are notified of your logo designs. The email that is
sent to them brings them to a page that lets them rate the logos, and even provide
comments. I found this tool to be extremely valuable, and really interesting to see
how people's tastes varied. Likewise, having the logo concepts on the web made the
process easier, not having to email images to people and hope that the recipients
were able to view them. Viewing them on the web, you know exactly what they are looking
it. It's also important to note that Logoworks' web site does not have any of that
proprietary crap that some web sites have that break the page under certain browsers
or on certain platforms. I had the same viewing experience on a variety of browsers,
both on Mac and on Windows.
After processing the ratings and comments (you decide how long to wait), you then
must select one of the initial concepts for the Logoworks team to work with. You
may be hard-pressed to select one. For instance, you may not really like any of them,
or you may like some aspects from one, and other aspects from another. If you absolutely
hate all of them and lose faith in the process, you can back out at this time and
get a refund, but you'll forfeit a $75 fee which is non-refundable. The key at this
point is to remember that these are initial concepts, and your finished product may
not look anything like the initial concepts. If you chose the Silver package, then
with only two revisions, you'll hopefully like at least one of the initial concepts.
After selecting a concept, you include a lot of feedback with your submission. You
state what you liked about the concept, what you don't like, and you also can mention
what you like about other concepts that you didn't select. You can say something
like, "I really liked the graphic in concept 1, but I prefer the font style
of concept 3". You can even submit files with your feedback that can be anything
from a list of more information to help the designers, to actual graphics that you
revised yourself to show them the direction you'd like to go.
What's important to note is that you should become part of the process. You could
sit back and let the Logoworks designers run willy nilly with your logo, providing
minimal feedback, and they'll still come up with a design. However, if you really
want this logo to represent your business, the more you become part of the process,
the better the results will be. The way I looked at it was that I didn't hire a team
to create my company's logo; rather, I hired a team to help me create my company's
Once you have selected your initial concept, Logoworks will provide you a new date
and time for when they will have a revision of the concept ready for you to view.
If your feedback indicate a lot of changes, including incorporating aspects from
other concepts, they will likely provide more than one revision to look at. Once
your receive the revisions, once again you must select the revised concept you like
the best. If it is exactly what you want, you can choose to select it as your final
design. If it still needs work, then you provide additional feedback, and submit
the selection for additional revisements.
With the exception of the Silver package, you can continue this revision cycle for
as long as you need to. There is no reason to select anything less than what you
want, and even after several revisions, you can choose to alter the direction (say,
for example, the direction you were headed seemed to be getting less desireable).
The colleague feedback system is not activated during the revision process, so I
set up my own web page to display concept designs for others to rate. It would have
been easier to use Logoworks feedback page had they offered it, but the one advantage
I did have for creating my own web page is that I could add concepts of my own design
(altered versions of Logoworks designs). If any of those became popular, I could
then submit the altered concept to Logoworks during the feedback process.
Once you've made your final selection, Logoworks takes a few more business days to
finalize the artwork into hi-resolution graphics. They will notify you once the work
is ready, at which time you may immediately download the logos. They provide you
three versions of the logo, all hi-resolution in EPS, JPEG, and TIF formats. In addition,
they send you a CD that contains the finished product.
Stationery and Business Cards
Whether you opted for a package that included stationery and business cards, or if
you decided to add-on this product after seeing your logo, having Logoworks setup
stationery and business card graphics is definitely worth consideration. If you love
the logo they came up with, you'll love the stationery, and of course you'll want
business cards that tout your new logo.
The process of getting stationery and business card graphics is much easier than
the logo process, since you've already done the hard part: decided upon a specific
logo. Utilizing the theme and colors of your logo, Logoworks comes up with a couple
of options for stationery. You select the one you like the best, and if you want
any changes, you can also get revisions of your selection. Once the final selection
has been made, Logoworks puts together a downloadable package for you that includes
- Fonts used
- Business Card front
in EPS and PDF
- Business Card back
in EPS and PDF
- Envelope in EPS and
- Letter head in EPS
Taking It Further
If you're really happy with your logo design, Logoworks offers a number of ways to
take your logo even further. They offer a boat load of promotional products through 3rd party vendors
that sport your logo, ranging from pens and cups to shirts, sweaters and hats. Many
of these products require a one-time setup fee, and then you just pay per item. For
the clothing lines, they will do a stitch of the logo on some fabric using the colors
you select, and then email you a picture of the stitch for approval before initiating
the order with the clothing vendor. You can also setup various options, such as using
one color theme on dark colors, and another color theme on light colors.
How It Rates
For this review, we initiated logo designs for the Mac Guild, Pascal Central, and
ExcaliburWorld Software. Skipping directly to the end, you can see the resulting
logos using the links below:
Each of these requests
came from different perspectives, and involved a different process in finally coming
to a final selection.
Pascal Central logo
Perhaps the easiest and least cumbersome logo design (for both myself and the Logoworks
staff) was the Pascal Central logo design. Pascal Central has been around for a number
of years, and we didn't want to veer too far away from the current logo design. The
logo only consisted of the text "Pascal Central", and some version of a
bust of Blaise Pascal. These elements weren't negotiable. That basically left the
Logoworks design staff to come up with variations of the bust as well as variations
of the text style. For the initial concepts, I obtained reviews from members of the
MacPascal mailing list. I noticed immediately that concepts that got too artsy were
immediately rejected, and the flow of thought seemed to point towards elegance and
simplicity. The revision process only took a few turns before a final selection was
made. Because most of the concept design was already pre-determined, this example
shows an evoluation of taking a fixed design and simply making it look nicer.
Take a look at our previous two designs from 2000 and 2004, and then compare them with our new
Pascal Central logo - 2000
Pascal Central logo - 2004
Pascal Central logo - 2006
The graphic is crisper and cleaner, and the font style is far more elegant and representative
of the Pascal Central community than either of the former logos. Granted, they didn't
just come up with that logo on the fly, but it was relatively easy to point Logoworks
in the right direction. This design is also a good illustration of how important
the fine details are. Each curve, each stroke, each color, all impacts the overall
effect the logo has visually on the viewer.
Mac Guild logo
The next logo design was for the Mac Guild, the very web site that this review is
being published on. Members of the Mac Guild User Group are scattered throughout
the United States, and although they all have one thing in common - Macintosh Computers
- the diversity in this group is as dramatic as any random selection of personalities
from the US. It was amusing to read the comments, as I would often read one opinion,
followed by another that almost completely the opposite.
I should state that the initial set of concepts provided for the Mac Guild logo were
immediately rejected. Somewhere in the communication, there must have been a misunderstanding,
as none of the initial logos incorporated the Finder icon or Apple icon as requested.
Logoworks was good enough to come up with an entirely different set of logos, and
so the revision process began.
As mentioned above, the opinions of Mac Guild members differed dramatically. For
starters the group appeared to be split in pieces as far as their favorite Mac Guild
Mac Guild audience split amongst a wide range of icon designs
The good thing about
the colleague reviews is that in addition to selecting a design (they actually select
their top 3), they also provide their comments associated to their selection. The
comments were a major contributor to the direction the logo design went. For instances,
due to the comparison of the icon to the far right to the Microsoft Messenger icon,
we discarded that design. Someone compared the globe design to a travel agency, so
it was discarded. The shield design was compared to a road sign, but at the same
time, many people liked the feel of the logo, recommending a change to the shape.
Based upon these feedbacks, I narrowed down the icons to the following:
Narrowing down the Mac Guild icons
At the same time,
we were trying to narrow down the best text option and fonts. There were a number
of varying options, but the one we finally went with was:
The Mac Guild text
The Mac Guild logo
design took a different path than that of the Pascal Central design. Because there
were so many varying opinions, after the initial concepts, I setup my own web page
for reviewing logo designs (since the colleague review was no longer available).
During this process, we began to experiment and alter Logowork's designs to come
up with new ones. In other words, we took ownership of the process, which I think
is important to mention. If you are working on your company logo, it is unlikely
that someone who does not fully understand your entity is going to just magically
come up with the "killer design" out of the box. Granted, sometimes things
like that do happen, but I don't think it's a fair expectation. From my experience,
I think it is critical that you get deeply entrenched with the Logoworks design team,
and understand that you can alter the course, come up with new ideas, and basically
take your logo design exactly where you want to take it. The way that Logoworks worked
with us during the design evolution is of tremendous value to this process.
In the end, we eventually
discarded the Apple icon due to it being too similar to Apple Computer's logo. We
believe it was different enough to not conflict with their trademark, but we didn't
believe it was different enough to give our User Group the unique identity that we
were shooting for. Unfortunately, once we were down to two icons, the Mac Guild was
evenly divided between the two remaining options (should I have been surprised?).
I personally like them both, so having the membership split on the two did not help
me make a decision. At that point, I decided to make a creative decision. I asked
for a logo design that included both icons. Although the Logoworks designers strongly
recommended against that, I had alterior motives for pursuing it. It dawned on me
that I didn't need to make a decision right away between the two icons, and so by
selecting a design that contained them both, I could make that decision later on.
Moreover, I could use the icon that wasn't selected for the main web page for a different
purpose, such as the website favicon, or the Mac Guild membership website. So although
the final design selected contained both icons, the Photoshop revised logo design used on the Mac Guild web site features only the circular
Finder icon design. I ended up using the shield icon as the website favicon, and
will probably incorporate it into the membership site.
Mac Guild logo - 2004
Mac Guild logo - 2006
Of the three logo designs, the ExcaliburWorld logo was probably the most difficult.
This is not due to anything on Logooworks part, but mainly due to it being my personal
company. In other words, I have a bigger emotional investment in this logo design,
so even though I still got a lot of feedback from others, I tended to ignore any
feedback that I didn't agree with. This was my baby.
At the start of the process, I was not enamoured with any of the logo designs. Again,
this was not due to Logoworks designers not coming through with unique and interesting
designs, but primarily because none of the designs converyed the feeling that I wanted
to feel from the logo. This, however, is where a miscommunication led to a pause
in the action. At that point, I had the understanding (misunderstanding as it turned
out to be) that if you didn't like any of the initial concepts, you could toss them
all and start over. This, however, is not the policy. The only reason we got away
with it for the Mac Guild logos is because the initial concepts were based upon a
misinterpretation of the requirements. In the case of ExcaliburWorld, I was just
being extremely picky.
As the policy goes, to discard all the initial concepts, you would essentially be
terminating the contract, which you can do, but for a fee of $75. So in essence,
if you wanted to have an entirely new set of initial concepts, you could pay the
$75 fee and start over. Once I understood the policy, I realized there was no reason
to go that route. This package allowed for unlimited revisions, and as the Logoworks
project manager indicated, even though I would have to choose one of these initial
concepts, the final design could very well be nothing like any of the initial concepts.
So I chose one concept and moved forward. It's important to note in light of this
experience, that if you have even halfway serious intentions for the logo, choose
a package that provides unlimited revisions.
After selecting one of the concepts, I included a lot of feedback indicating all
the things that I wanted to see changed. I did like varying aspects from a few of
the other concepts, so I mentioned those as well. In the end, and after several revision
cycles, I ended up going with a logo design that did have remnants from a few of
the initial concepts, as well as some new design elements introduced along the way.
In looking back, I've also realized that the evolution of this logo actually eliminated
a number of fancy stuff that I liked, but that, in the end, didn't work as part of
the logo. This is where emotional attachment can get you stuck, and another reason
why unlimited revisions can be really important. I eventually let go of the "lady
in the lake" image found in the original ExcaliburWorld logo, and opted for a simple, yet
very cool and elegant logo design.
ExcaliburWorld Software final logo design
The packages I reviewed included stationery and business cards graphics, and I was
very impressed with the results for all three logos. The graphics allow you to print
high quality stationery and business cards with your logo design. I highly recommend
it as a package add-on (if you didn't already order a package that includes it).
You can use a number of 3rd party business card printing services for printing up
the cards, or you can use Logoworks. They include a pretty nice deal for printing
your first box of business cards, and for this review, I was able to get a box of
business cards for the Mac Guild. I was so impressed with the quality of the cards,
that I decided to order a box of cards for ExcaliburWorld as well (only the first
box was provided for the review, but the cost and quality was attractive enough to
pay for another box).
For the purposes of this review, Logoworks also provided me a budget to order Mac
Guild promotional items. After reviewing the different items and prices, I opted
for a few hats and long sleeve shirts. I chose hats and shirts of both light and
dark material, so I worked with Logoworks over a period of a few days to develop
just the right color theme to show up well on the clothing. I also opted for the
Mac Guild logo with just a single icon (aka, no shield icon). Once we decided on
the color themes, they did a couple of stitch outs, and from there, the order was
When I received the marchandise, I was ecstatic. First of all, the quality of the
shirts and hats is top notch. Logoworks uses 3rd party clothing vendors that pride
themselves with delivering on quality merchandise. The best part, however, was how
beautiful the Mac Guild logos appeared visually on both the shirts and the hats.
Mac Guild Logo Hat
Since the one top
setup fee has already been paid for on the clothing items, this also opens the doors
for anyone within the Mac Guild, or even outside the Mac Guild who simply want a
Mac Guild logo'd item, to order a hat or shirt of your choice for the direct cost
shown on the web site. It truly is the buyer's choice. Even though I ordered specific
colors and styles of shirts and hats, the stitching can be applied to any clothing
item. That means you can order any style or any color of hat or shirt you can find
on the web site, either on the Logoworks web site, or on the web site of the 3rd
party vendors (these web sites offer more styles than are shown on Logoworks' site).
Mac Guild Logo Shirt
NOTE: There are no
proceeds that go to the Mac Guild for purchasing any of these items, so you shouldn't
purchase with the idea that you are benefiting the Mac Guild financially. Of course,
in terms of prestige and pride, all purchases definitely benefit the Mac Guild in
For the most part, the entire logo design process is conducted through email and
the Logoworks website. There were times during the review cycles, especially at startup,
when the project lead would also call on the phone to discuss the project. There
was enough continuous interaction to keep me satisfied with the communication during
the entire process. The scheduled next revisions also helped in removing any feelings
of "why haven't I seen anything?" They tell you exactly when you will see
something next, and not once during any of the logo designs I reviewed did they miss
a date or time (sometimes earlier, but never later).
The website was used for viewing the designs, submitting revision feedback, and collecting
peer reviews. For the most part, the website worked just fine. It did not have any
of that PC-only proprietary junk in it, so I never had any problems using it under
Safari on my Mac.
There is, however, some room for improvements.
As peer reviews came in, they were sorted alphabetically, rather than new ones showing
up at the top. This made it a bit difficult for me to discern which reviews were
new each time I previewed the web page. Having them sorted by date received would
have been an easier way to review the newest entries. Further, when reading comments
by peers, they often refer to the compositions by number (because that is what is
they see during the review), but on the peer reviews page, I only see the chosen
logos and the rankings without the original concept numbers. It would have been very
helpful to have the composition numbers attached to each logo to make sense out of
a lot of the feedback.
When reviewing revisions on the web, I often wanted to see the original concepts
to compare to, and to possibly make further references to the original concepts.
Unfortunately, you have no visibility to the original concepts once the revisions
come online. I had to manually download the original concepts one by one so that
I can keep them handy for comparisons. Also, when submitting revision feedback, it
would be good to have a visual of all the concepts (or at least a pop up link to
them) so it is easier to reference them. You always have to choose one concept, but
you often make references to the other concepts as part of the feedback. The website
could improve this process to make it easier to reference whichever concepts that
needed to be referenced.
For those who order packages with limited revisions, it would also be helpful if
the web site included how many revisions you have left. It's very easy to loose track.
NOTE: If you are on your last revision, you may choose a further revision in which
you are taken to a credit card page to pay $40 for the additional revision. However,
for a small defect, such as wanting to remove a flaw in the graphic, you can optionally
call Logoworks to discuss the matter. It would be nice to have the option to handle
those instances online as well.
With regards to the email notifications, one thing missing from the email was a reference
to the specific project. The email basically says something along the lines of "your
revisions are ready to review", but doesn't state which project. Granted, this
is only an issue if you have multiple projects, but it's probably also an easy thing
Finally, when it comes down to the promotional items, there is currently no online
process for handling these. An online process would speed things up and make it easier
to manage (and most likely encourage more customers to try it out). At the time of
this review, the process involves emailing product descriptions and quantities, and
then later receiving emailed invoices.
Logoworks is truly a one-stop shopping service for all of your logo needs. They provide
an extensive and methodical approach to logo designs for your business, club, website,
or any entity that a logo would benefit. Based upon information you provide at signup,
the Logoworks team of designers creates a set of unique logo designs for you to choose
from. Logoworks uses a web-based interface to their team of designers, providing
features such as peer review for selecting a design to start with and online feedback
to improve the design. Depending upon the package you select, you get a limited or
unlimited number of revisions before you have to select a final design. Logoworks
sends you a CD containing all the final logo design artwork, as well as making it
downloadable via the web for instant gratification. They also provide services for
business card and stationery templates based upon your new logo, and can print up
the business cards for you. You can also order pens, cups, hats, shirts, and more,
all featuring your newly created logo. While there are a few features on the web
that could be improved, the overall design process was easy to use and produced fantastic
results. With limited revisions, Logoworks will create a unique design based upon
your initial criteria that can be used as-is or further improved by your own graphics
artists. With unlimited revisions, you can sit back and let Logoworks do all the
work, as their design team produces revision after revision until they reach a design
that you are completely satisfied with. For those looking for that special and unique
symbol to represent your company or group and have the budget for the service, you
really cannot go wrong with any of the Logoworks unlimited revisions packages.
- Great way to hire temporary
designers at a fixed price
- Creates unique and professionally
- Unlimited revisions option
means you only accept the design that you love
- Colleague feedback is
- Stationery, business
cards and promotional items make it a one stop logo design center
- If you have limited revisions,
you may not be happy with the final design
- Peers reviews are only
available on the initial concepts
- Peers reviews are not
sorted by date nor include composition numbers for reference
- Revision feedback form
does not provide easy access to designs for reference
- No online process for
ordering promotional items
4 out of 5 Mice